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stealing wmds. he is their guy. we report, you freak out. vote union. let's play "hardball." good evening, i'm chris matthews up in new york. whose side are you on? could tough times turn out to be the firewall democrats have been looking for? could economic resentment have an anti-big shot sentiment that breaks the republican surge? white working class voters, unions are working hard to keep them in the democratic column. can they do it? plus, just as democrats try to turn the tables on
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republicans over the economy, some top republicans are suddenly adopting gay marriage as a conservative cause. more and more elite republicans are saying government should support marriage, period. who saw that coming? also about last night, president obama's speech on iraq pleased the right wing and enraged the left. how did that happen? plus, busted. we've got the goods on that whopper that glenn beck told at his rally on saturday. and let me finish with some advice on democrats how they can deny republicans all-out victory this november. let's start with what labor is doing to help the democrats -- a group filiated with the afl-cio. thank you, karen, for joining us. what exactly is your effort, your strategy nationwide to get well, working people to vote democrat or to get involved politically, if you will?
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>> well, it's simple. we're about jobs. we're here to change this economy, to make sure it's working for working people and it's what we do all year around and now we're doing it for the election. working america is a union for folks who don't have a union on the job. we've got 3 million members and we talked to tens of thousands every single week about jobs, the economy, outsourcing, tax cuts for the wealthy and we know what matters to them. >> well it sounds like people should automatically vote labor or democrat if they're working people. they don't have a college degree and they don't have a -- let me show you this poll. it's basically right now shows republicans winning working class whites by 49-33, a 16-point spread. when you ask them about barack obama, it's just as bad. basically that's an
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overwhelming -- those without a college degree, 33%, just a third of working people like president obama. 59%, three out of five disapprove of him. by the way, last year around the summertime, it was 41 approve, 51 disapprove. nowhere near the margin it is right now. how do you explain a 26-point differential negatively against the president among white working class people, dan? >> i mean, i think what i know is what we're seeing in communities around ohio and around the country. and people are concerned about outsourcing, concerned about what wall street did to the economy. when we talk to them about those things and what president obama and what democrats have done about those things, they're supportive. we just need to make sure we're connecting to enough people with our message, because it moves them. i think working people are smart. and they'll figure out what's going on. >> what are you finding out on the other side, are they listening to right wing television, are they listening to the culture voice to get them
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to vote republican or right wing on cultural issues, not just economic issues? >> you'll see that. you'll come to the door and people will be watching fox news or glenn beck. a lot of those folks come over, we talk to them. they join up and get involved with working america and become part of the afl-cio. we talk to them about things like wall street greed, holding corporations accountable for what they've done. and so we see it definitely, but we're able to cut through it. there's nothing more powerful than a real person standing there telling you about what's going on in the community and what a lot of these republicans have been doing and what they stand for. >> karen, you're younger than me, i'm sure. the fact is, a lot of working people, men and women voting for george wallace in the '60s, not in their economic interests but because they were ticked off with racial change, ethnic change. is that why they're listening to
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beck and the rest of them, even know it's not in their tax interest or in health care, they're still thinking right wing? >> i think it's true that working people have been voting against their own interest for decades now, and they've been fooled into following these social wedge issues that blame immigrants, for example, for ruining the economy, when it's wall street. and that they direct people to the wrong kinds of scapegoats and enemies. but when we talk to working people about the issues, when we give them good information and also when we give them a sense that there is strength in numbers that you can join with other people through working america, through a union, that you can have economic power and it's worth investing your vote on these economic issues. we've just seen a huge turn around among the 3 million members that we have.
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>> let's take a listen to head of the afl-cio pledging to bring labor power to the midterm elections. >> the union is a trusted messenger that will reach 17 million working class voters. in total, we're engaged in a massive mobilization in 26 states. over the next two months, we'll talk to millions and millions of workers at their work sites, at their homes, on the phone, and through local and national mail. >> you know, i wonder, i like the guy, known him a long time. yet he doesn't match the star power, the glitz, the performance art, and that's what i call it, of a glenn beck. glenn beck is out there preaching religion now, whatever will sell and get people into the audience for him, he's willing to sell. he's teaching working wages. do you have to have, to win the
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argument of working wages, if you're out, pick the right economic side for your own self-interest, don't you have to show something besides we're telling you so? don't you have to have steel companies coming back, railroads being built, highways being built? don't you have to see the job and construction going on to believe that the democrats are producing jobs, the progressives are doing the job? >> absolutely. >> do you see that, though? that's the question. do you have to make the case? where is the reality? >> there is reality. in cleveland, we've been talking to members about a wind turbine project, the first fresh water wind turbine project that governor strickland has helped bring to the area and it resonates with people. you've got to have that, and it really -- people respond when we talk about it. it's real, it's coming, and we also tell them that we've been cleaning up wall street's mess and it's not all cleaned up yet,
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but we have to keep doing it. and i would hardly trust wall street to clean up its mess when it object admit when it's responsible for what it's done. >> karen, i worry about one thing economically in this country, and everybody has a brain worries about it, automation and productivity are great things. it's great that we have machines and tools that can make better machines. but unfortunately at a certain point, we're making people redundant. there's cost cutting, job cutting and every industry i can think of to keep the dow jones averages up, to keep the profits up. at some point, are we going to have to deal with this problem, the fact that labor is getting made unnecessary in many industries to the point of being replaced by robots? >> this isn't inevitable, it's not technology, this is economic policy. we've got corporations that are enjoying record profits while
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they refuse to hire workers. they're banking it, they're giving it to their ceos. at the same time, we've got republicans who are saying more tax cuts for the super rich. we've got corporate profits, that's fine, no jobs. what are you going to do and we'll ship the rest of them out of this country. we've got leaders in the senate, republican leaders who said that unemployed workers are lazy and they need the discipline of losing their benefits. when we give people this information, then they know how they want to vote. they're clear about what the options are. and in ohio, we're going to talk to 100,000 unemployed voters, swing voters, just in ohio, and if you think 100,000 swing voters who are unemployed who get new information doesn't make a difference in ohio, you're wrong. we can win -- that's the decisive vote in every election. >> last question, dan, what do
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you do about outsourcing, globalization, all these things that should be good for america have caused a lot of middle age guys, i know them, who have been thrown out of work? >> yeah, we have a lot of members too, they've been the people packing up their jobs and helping to outsource them and send them overseas. i think the critical thing to understand and what our members do understand is that this is caused by policy. these are trade deals like nafta that have caused this to happen and we can change that. it's a question of, do we make american workers, do we drag them down to the standards -- >> if the republicans get in, and i'm just telling you the facts that you already know, more trade deals, more globalization, more problems, and that's a fact of life. dan, thank you. thank you karen for coming on. coming up, elite members of the republican party are voicing their support for gay marriage.
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there is a case being made for marriage between same-sex partners. will the republican party buy into this? will the tea partiers go along with it on gay marriage? i don't know. find out in a minute. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] he's sweet, even with 1/3 less sugar than soda. kool-aid delivering more smiles per gallon.
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welcome back to "hardball." last week former republican party chairman and bush campaign manager ken melman announced publicly that he is gay. he also said he plans to help build support for gay marriage. he joined the prominent conservative attorney ted olson, the u.s. solicitor general under george bush, in supporting the cause. they are not the only ones. here's what steve schmid, who steered john mccain's campaign in 2008 told "the huffington post." there is a strong conservative case to be made in favor of gay marriage. marriage is an institution that strengthens and stabilizes society, an institution that has the capacity to bring profound joy and happiness to people and it's a matter of equality and
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keeping faith with one of the charters of the nation, the right to live your life. will more conservatives join what is called a conservative case for gay marriage? joe, are you glad to is have the unlikely support, republicans joining the ranks, and i want to ask in a minute if there's a problem going for same-sex marriage under the constitution or rather going state by state, but the first question is are you happy to have your new allies here? >> absolutely. every day we see more and more people moving in the direction of supporting marriage equality. as ken melman said, you know, the past is the past. his offer was to help move us forward, to do what he could, and i think, you know, we certainly don't have the luxury at this point in our movement to turn away any offer of help so whether it's ken melman or meghan mccain, elites within the republican party, well-respected figures in the republican party whose opinion matters to
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republicans. >> you don't like the word elite? >> not that i don't like the word elite. i just think that -- >> ben ginsberg, ted olsen, the top dogs, and i'm doing it disparagingly because i've yet to see grassroots right wing support for same-sex marage, clarke, so if you're going to make me make the case for that, go ahead. are the regular grass roots republicans with you, or is this just the elite republicans? >> no, it is a grass roots republicans, because we're talking about everyday people. your average log cabin republican donor is like your average rnc donor. i don't know if you know this, but $20 to $25 is the average donation of a log cabiner. that's a police officer in schenectady, new york, or a schoolteacher in lawrence, kansas, so, yeah, grass roots is on board. we've been on board. this is not new news. >> you're saying all kinds of people can be gay? >> sure.
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>> i'm just teasing, playing steve colbert here for a minute. >> let me ask you about the key question. first, joe, you've been following this. let me start with clarke because this is sort of a republican question. scalia, i've always watched him. after the lawrence case on sodomy back a couple years ago he said this opens the door to perhaps a view under the liberty clause, under the due process clause, of perhaps opening up the gay marriage under the constitution as a right. he saw it coming. whether he likes what he saw coming is another question. could scalia be the surprising vote in the supreme court for this case against prop 2 in california which would make it a right under our constitution to have a same-sex marriage? >> i'm not going to speak on behalf of justice scalia, but i will say if perry versus schwarzenegger does go up to a higher level, if it's escalated up to a supreme court case, that will be part of the argument that was made at a lower federal court, that it is against the constitution.
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we're talking about inalienable rights here. it's not part of the preamble but a conservative tenet, individual liberty, individual responsibility. the case certainly can be made, and it will be made. mr. olsen has already made it once and will continue to make it if there's an appeals process. >> unless the crazies in your party get rid of the 14th amendment and then you'll have problems, right? >> i don't think -- actually there's not an official move to withdraw any amendments at this time. nice try, chris. >> you know what i'm talking about. joe, let me go to a liberal here. joe, it seems the situation that the right wing would like to give people life, liberty and property protected under the 14th amendment except due process being denied by due process and some of the crazier elements in the republican party are talking about getting rid of the whole amendment because they don't like birth citizenship or whatever you call it. your thoughts on that, the weirdness going on here? >> i think you're pointing out what maybe historically had been a two-way split within the republican party now feels like a three-way split, moderate
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republicans and the voices coming forward speaking out for marriage. you've got the tea party which at least outwardly has gone to great lengths to avoid a discussion of social issues and then you've got, you know, the far right who have for a long time now been really the only voice out there against marriage equality offering up all sorts of reasons why it's a bad idea. >> yeah. >> and i think what is refreshing and helpful is a new chorus of voices coming forward countering that, and then you add to that the case in california for the first time where they had to bring evidence forward to suggest that marriage equality was a bad idea and as we saw they had nothing to offer, so, you know, you talked about the grass roots. it is true that among republican voters generally were lagging, you know, about 20 points or 30 points behind democrats, 20 behind independents. and again, as people like ken melman and others come forward, you'll see the numbers start to move because there's been no counter to the nutty right. >> well, here's steve schmid who ran the mccain campaign, quote, more and more conservatives are
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saying opposition to gay marriage would not be a litmus test for membership in the gop and more conservatives are making the case that they know more want government in the bedroom. and i do believe on behalf of your cause, clarke, which i support, i think the more people come out and express themselves in terms of their orientation, the more that families become openly aware of it and become somewhat protective and basically become allies in this cause, and as it spreads and spreads and spreads, republicans as well as democratic and independent families join the cause for equality here, but is the republican platform going to change by 2012, sir? >> well, we're working on it and we're not only just working on it from within the party but just we're talking about grass roots. many of our chapter leaders in log cabin republicans across the nation are delegates to the convention. some of them are actually rnc eagles or the high donor level within the party. the dialogue is already there, at a level that it hasn't been
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frankly. my dialogue with the rnc and the campaign committees are ongoing. not every member of the republican party, not every republican office holder is on the same page, but that's the whole point of why we're having dialogue. if i can get a member of congress to at least agree to certain aspects like employment non-discrimination, that begins a dialogue or if they agree to repeal of don't ask, don't tell, that's another foothold into the dialogue. some members of congress want to start out by talking tax equity in the next session of congress. we'll take that. the ball is moving forward. and the party is getting back to basics. >> where it's not moving forward, i was watching the glenn beck rally the other day and i've got to tell you the christian right under palin and under the banner of palin and beck, trying to take that party from its secular roots, almost like a matchup with the middle east politics and try to turn it into a christian right party with some jewish conservatives but mainly a christian right
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party. they are trying to turn it into that based upon god and jesus and all this in an incredibly un-american way turning a political party into a religious institution. i don't think it's going to help marriage equality. my thoughts now. what are yours? >> well, glenn beck for starters actually is fine with marriage equality, so, we're not going to get in here and talk about semantics about some libertarian movements or some other voices within the republican party. we can, but if we're talking about marriage equality, you happened to raise mr. beck's name. he's actually in support of it. >> i guess i don't hear that sound coming from the rally types, but your thoughts, joe. how do you read it? >> look, i completely agree with you as you laid out the situation with palin and beck, but it is interesting to note that, you know, maybe tactically, even glenn beck realizes that to have an intolerant view about marriage equality just doesn't square with growing the ranks of the republican party, and so whether that is his individual view or whether it's sort of a tactical acknowledgement that you're not going to grow the ranks of the
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base unless you start to ease off on some of this stuff i think is an interesting thing to see, that, you know, whether he feels that way or not, he said marriage equality doesn't bother me. >> may not go too well with his new love power gambit. thank you. i know after kicking the democrats below the belts for months and months and months to decide to celebrate their victory going into november by acting like they are the good people. hey, thank you, clarke cooper. >> where is president obama on marriage equality, he's behind dick cheney. >> not with us. >> thank you. up next, they say george washington always told the truth. the same might not be said of mr. beck. we caught him in a big fib, a big fib. that's coming in the sideshow. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. [ children laughing ] look in the glove box. [ children laughing ] suitcase? huh? ♪ where do gummy bears hide? under the seat. look! yeah! ♪ [ telephone rings ]
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back to "hardball." now to the "sideshow." first, a whopper out of glenn beck. did you catch this colorful bit from saturday's rally? i have been going to mt. vernon. i went to the national archives, and i held the first inaugural address written in his own hand by george washington. >> well, beck held washington's inaugural address a priceless piece of history in his own hands? it never happened. a spokeswoman says during beck's vip tour he never got his hand on the speech. glenn beck in performance. former philadelphia eagle lineman jon runyan retired last year to run as a republican against democratic congressman john adler. here's adler's hilarious ad going after him. >> this is congressional candidate jon runyan's house, nice, isn't it, cost millions except runyan didn't call it a house. tried to call it a farm.
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he bought one donkey to get a $20,000 tax break by saying he lives on a farm. luckily he was caught. when new jersey families are fighting to make ends meet, jon runyan is trying to rip the system off. >> i love that sound. when runyan's campaign manager was asked back in january about this so-called farm, he said runyan was doing nothing illegal. that's a great defense, and that the former lineman considers himself, quote, a steward of the land. now for tonight's big number. billionaire jeff green isn't ready to move past his senate primary loss to kendrick meek. he's preparing a libel lawsuit against two florida newspapers, "the st. pete times" and "miami herald" for their reporting about potentially fraudulent real estate deals that green says cost him the primary. a claim that's far-fetched given the margin of 57% to 31%, by which he lost to congressman kendrick meek. how much is he looking for in damages?
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$500 million. green says he would like to see the newspapers punished. the editor of "the st. pete times" says he stands by the reporting. green's $500 million beat the press lawsuit, tonight's big number. up next, many neoconservatives like what they heard from president obama in last night's oval office address on iraq. is the president moving to the right on foreign policy so he can move left here at home? you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. ian ] so this is dan c. he tweeted that he's using a wheat thin to pick his air guitar. good morning, dan. hello. do you recall tweeting, using a wheat thin to pick my air guitar? yes. this is a limited edition air guitar. whoa! [ brian ] it's a mehlenbacher hollow neck. a mehlenbacher. [ laughs ] so... oh thank you. yeah. can i get a box of picks? have at it man, let's just do it. ♪ [ brian ] can i get a windmill? ♪ [ brian ] come on boys, who's next?
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. president obama has declared a state of emergency in north carolina at hurricane earl swirls to the coast.
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mandatory evacuation orders. a danger of rip currents already along the southern atlantic seaboard. winds of up to 100 miles an hour are expected. president obama met with israeli and palestinian members with face-to-face peace talks led to start here's what's happening. police are confirming they shot and killed suspect james jay lee at the discovery communications headquarters building. . the number of illegal immigrants in the u.s. -- that may be due to the u.s. economy and tougher working permits. welcome back to "hardball." critics on the left ripped into president obama's iraq speech
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last night, but his address won praise from the right, certain especially neoconservatives. william kristol wrote, quote, the president seemed to me to go after about as far as an anti-iraq war president could go in praising the war effort. not a bad tribute to the troops and not a bad statement of the importance, an indispensability of hard power. well, is the president taking a hawkish foreign policy approach so he can move the party and the country and the progressive direction at home? michael crowley is the deputy bureau chief for "time" magazine and the associate editor for "washington post" joins us. let me start with michael. do you agree with me? i think he has hillary clinton over there, gates over there, petraeus over there, a keep-going policy in afghanistan, basically a moderate departure from iraq, doing basically what bush would have done so he can go liberal and progressive at home. your thoughts? >> you make a good point, chris. he sent the signal right from the outset with his staffing decision putting in jones, friends with mccain and gates
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and hillary who obviously he criticized in the campaign for being hawkish. i think it's true. there's been a lot of continuity on iraq. bush moved in obama's direction. he signed the agreement with the iraqis that really codified the withdrawals but when you look at things like pursuing the fight in afghanistan, continuing some pretty heavy detention policies around the world, including guantanamo bay still being open and military tribunals and that sort of thing, there is a lot of continuity and it stands to reason, that democratic presidents traditionally as you know feel a little defensive about foreign policy, particularly one without military experience and his default instinct is to play it more cautious and conservative and try to push the agenda on the domestic side. >> but rajiv, this is the reason people voted for his fellow. we voted for his instinct back in 2002 when everybody was saber rattling and beating the drum for war with iraq, a bad war, he was out there saying no, this doesn't make sense. there's no reason for this war. he was eloquent, and now he gave a speech last night that sounded like some republican from the
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hinterlands was offering a counter for what he was supposed to say. your thoughts? >> and, you know, he never came out and really expressed last night some of the key reasons for why this whole war effort was a total mistake to begin with. you know, he sort of danced around it. now some people might say that wasn't the right time to do it. it was a moment to pay respect to what the troops had accomplished, but he -- he didn't really give the left anything in all of this, and you look at afghanistan, you know. he's a smart guy. he sees through, i think, some of the real challenges that the counterinsurgency mission there has, yet after three months of discussion at the white house he essentially gave the military everything it wanted and really hasn't gotten a whole lost credit for it. >> well said, the counterinsurgency strategy which is basically nation-building. let's take a look. here's the president telling soldiers at ft. bliss that the war in iraq made america more
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secure. very important words from yesterday. >> the fact of the matter is that because of the extraordinary service that all of you have done and so many people here at ft. bliss have done, iraq has an opportunity to create a better future for itself and america is more secure. >> you know, mikal, there's more than 100,000 iraqis dead because of that war. they're not better off, and the whole world watched us kill them basically, or they got killed in that fighting that we started. does anyone think, including the president, that we have less hostility facing the world after seven years of us killing arabs on world television? >> no, i'm sure that he doesn't. i don't know that anyone does, and i think what you're seeing now is probably a man who feels the responsibility of being a national leader. these soldiers report up the chain of command to him. >> sure. >> i think he probably doesn't want any soldier feeling like
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he's reporting to a president who thinks that the guy is risking his life in vain. if you played some of the clips from the speech, the jefferson jackson dinner, sort of a crystal ball thing in iowa in late 2007, people would have been going crazy and would have been furious. this is a completely different tone, and i think it's just reflective, number one, of that kind of caution and conservatism we discussed before. number two, i think the tone he feels he has to strike as a commander in chief and as a national leader. >> you know, ed musky, one of the most thoughtful members of the senate that there ever was rajiv, he once said only talk when it improves the silence. what was gained by that speech last night? why didn't he just say, look, i salute the troops, they are great, they are courageous, they have sacrificed enormously in a war that's highly troubling to a lot of people. they are great, but i'm not going to say anything about the war tonight because everybody knows where i stood or he doesn't even have to say that,
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just imply that. >> you know, he wanted to claim credit for a campaign promise. >> i see. >> he wanted to do something i think to help energize his base in part, yet it left them feeling completely i think unfulfilled. you know, i thought one of the most remarkable lines from that speech last night, chris, was him saying we've met our responsibility in iraq. >> yeah. >> can you imagine if as a candidate he was making that case, you know, the moral responsibility borne by the united states? sure, you know. violence is down from its peak during the civil war, but does anybody really think that lives of iraqis are all that much better? i mean, sure they are not living under the thumb of a dictator. >> i know. >> but of all that has transpired there and then to sort of assert, well, yes, we now have fulfilled our responsibility as americans. >> you know, i'm a huge fan of the writing of john padora like everybody else, one of the gifted writers out there, but he basically saluted the president last night and he's pretty much of a hawkish fellow. here's president obama pivoting from the iraq war to the economy.
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now maybe this is the purpose of the speech last night to say we're now going to have a peace dividend and we've got to use it. well, let's listen. >> unfortunately, over the last decade we've not done what's necessary to shore up the foundations of our own prosperity. we spent $1 trillion at war, often financed by borrowing from overseas. this in turn has shortchanged investments in our own people and contributed to record deficits. and so at this moment, as we wind down the war in iraq, we must tackle those challenges at home with as much energy and grit and sense of common purpose as our men and women in uniform who have served abroad. they have met every test that they faced. now it's our turn. >> you know, sometimes i really support the president in a lot of his views, almost all of them almost, but i have to tell you something, michael, if he doesn't get rid of that teleprompter, it's like an eye test.
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he's reading words. it's separating him from us. your thoughts? you go to a meeting with him. businessmen are invited to meet them at the white house, he hauls out the damn teleprompter. he reads it to them. why even bring people into the room, have the teleprompter. i sense it's getting between him and us and i thought the speech last night was a terrible, or a great example rather of him using the teleprompter instead of his heart and his mind. he was reading words to us that any president could have written, had written for him and delivered. >> well, chris, i think most of his problems have to do with the economy being in the toilet. that's going to -- >> you don't want to respond to my teleprompter discourse. >> no, no, that was me saying a point, but, however, if there is a communication problem, i think obama was electrifying in the big halls with cheering crowds. he was funny and flashing that electric smile that he has, you know. he has his shirt off in his shirt sleeves and when he's behind the desk doing the professorial thing it's a little
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more stilted and not the flash and pizzazz of the obama who swept the country off his feet. it can be more kind of deadly. to that extent i agree with you. the teleprompter doesn't bother me as much. it's more the scale. on the smaller scale he threatens to put you to sleep a little bit particularly when we had expectations raised by the giant crowds and stadium events that were so dazzling and electrifying in which he worked so well. >> the medium and the message, both, your views. >> you do the oval office address when you're launching the war, when you're trying to celebrate the fact that you're keeping a promise and your troops are coming home. go and do it in front of a military audience and go get a crowd. he did the talk at ft. bliss. they should have used a military audience and base for the primetime address. >> or left it at that. the teleprompter is a problem for this guy. i think it's his menace. thank you very much, roger crowley and rajiv. up next, palin power.
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sarah palin's influence has helped decide a slew of races and going after iowa after having chalked up a big victory in alaska getting her candidate nominated to the united states senate, joe miller out of nowhere. she keeps coming and she keeps delivering and yet people keep doubting. when will they start doubting? more on "hardball" only on msnbc. that my chronic bronchitis was copd... i started managing it every day. i like to volunteer... hit the courts... and explore new places. i'm breathing better with spiriva. spiriva is the only once-daily inhaled maintenance treatment for both forms of copd... which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema. i take it every day... it keeps my airways open to help me breathe better all day long. spiriva does not replace fast acting inhalers for sudden symptoms. stop taking spiriva and call your doctor right away if your breathing suddenly worsens, your throat or tongue swells, you get hives, have vision changes or eye pain... or have problems passing urine.
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we're back. guess who is going to iowa? sarah palin. "the des moines register" reports palin will headline the iowa republican party's big ronald reagan day fund-raiser on september 17th. the paper notes that a party official said after playing hard to get for the past year, palin approached iowa republicans recently. micah joseph gross has a big piece on palin in the october issue of ""vanity fair,"" called "sarah palin, the sound and the furry" and msnbc's chef washington correspondent norah o'donnell also joins us. thank you so much, michael and thank you, nora, for joining us. you've been covering governor
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palin for all these months. michael, is she running for president? >> if you look at the connection she has with the crowds, if you look at the way that she compares herself to ronald reagan out there, if you feel the force of the connection, which is unlike anything i've felt since i saw reagan give his last speeches, i don't see how you can come to any other conclusion. >> your reporting based upon everything that you've seen. is there anything out there that would be an impediment to her running, anything that would encourage her not to run, be it embarrassment, anything to make her make a run for it? what has she got to lose? >> basically she's got her whole history. there is a town full of people up in wasilla. there is a whole crowd of people who she has alienated herself from who have been trampled, beaten down by this woman, who are so intimidated by her, that they have been too scared to speak out.
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>> but they will speak out if she runs, you think? >> i think they will. >> let's take a look at her at the glenn beck rally on saturday and then want to hear what nora thinks after reporting on her all this time. let's listen. >> and i know many of us today, we are worried about what we face. sometimes our challenges, they just seem insurmountable, but here together, at crossroads of our history, may this day, may this day be the change point. look around you. you're not alone. you are americans! you have the same steel spine and the moral courage of washington and lincoln and martin luther king. it is in you. it will sustain you, as it sustained them, so with pride in the red, white and blue, with gratitude to our men and women in uniform, let's stand together. let's stand with honor. let's restore america.
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>> wow! every time i hear her in that voice she develops there when she is on the platform, i don't think it is her regular speaking voice, i hear tina fey doing her and it works for the crowd. can you give us, i know you have to be objective but is there anyway you can read through lines? she is going to iowa. she is an evangelical christian. she is playing the christian woman, the grizzly, the mama grizzly but wls the religious overtone like she's never played before. isn't that setting her up to being the christian woman running for president in iowa where she could win that all important early test? >> absolutely. she is different from the other republican who's will run who are white males, who can't make the same sort of connection with voters that she can. she is both vulnerable. she is both problematic, all of her family issues. that's what connects with her. i've been out on the road with her. it sounds better in person than it does perhaps on camera. she does connect well with voters.
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i think that she is going to iowa is significant. not just because she reached out and wanted to go to this dinner but it suggest she has an interest in 2012 after sort of faing i've been more interested in selling books, making lots of money. i think she is starting to like the adoration she gets out there. >> who wouldn't? >> she is propelled by some of her staffers and those close to her to consider something bigger. >> let's take a look. here's a line from michael's piece in the upcoming new issue of "vanity fair." according to almost everyone who has ever known her including these have seen the darkest of her dark side, she has a great gift for making people feel good about themselves. michael, i've been reading your piece. she has the ability to look you in the eye and be totally focused on you. that is an ability of all great politicians. >> that's right. the problem is now, what she is doing instead of just telling people that they're good, is planting in them the idea that they might not be good enough. what she is telling them is, they don't think you're smart enough. the democrats.
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obama. they don't think you know what's going on. they don't think you're good enough. >> that question is pretty good. and i want to go with that very question. it seems to me she has this sdi. the strategic defense. i don't have to know all the questions about what i read. i don't have to read anything to be honest about it as long as i am a mother who had a son in who have fought in combat. i've raise ad family. i'm a regular person. that's her force field. no matter what the question, i don't need to know the answer to that because i'm an american mother. at what point does that become not even, even ludicrous. when you're asked a question about how will you deal with the middle east peace problems? how will you deal with nuclear technology around the world? what is a common sense solution? when there are no common sense solutions. it takes a lot of ingenuity to figure out what to do with these problems. when will the voters say enough of this common sense line of yours. what is the answer?
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>> well, i feel like we should have reached that point a long time ago. the question has as much to do with when those of us sitting in these chairs and looking in these cameras are going to stop giving her the attention that needs fire. she has proven that she is a person for whom there is no matter too small to lie about. there is no distinction between fact and fiction. >> we'll see how your piece runs. norah, your thoughts. you've been through the piece. you have covered her. how do you look at the piece by "vanity fair"? >> i think it is fascinating and it captures this complex person that sarah palin is. and that pale brand is exactly what makes her so marketable, why she can sell 2 million books and people come out in droves to see her. what is so fascinating about her use of the north star. a great narrative. good presidential campaigns need a narrative. she can be this celestial guide post in a time when most americans think the country is
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headed in the wrong direction and that can be a powerful negative. she has to work on the substance. >> maybe we need david broeder to come back and be strong. thank you for the big piece coming out. "vanity fair," a hell of a magazine. i'll have some advice for democrats about how they can report a big victory if they play it right. ♪ [ male announcer ] at ge capital, we're out there every day with clients like jetblue -- financing their fleet, sharing our expertise, and working with people who are changing the face of business in america. after 25 years in the aviation business, i kind of feel like if you're not having fun at what you do, then you've got the wrong job. my landing was better than yours. no, it wasn't. yes, it was. was not. yes, it was. what do you think? take one of the big ones out? nah.
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let me fwn the politics of this november. if the republicans want to roll up the score, they're on the right path. driven by a nasty economy and by a ferocious propaganda campaign that faints democrat in the white house as a terrorist sympathizer, they can keep doing what they're doing. democrats have a tougher task. how to win when thing are so darn bad? the smart, tough hard-nosed strategy is to play to your trend ises. democrats have been trusted first and foremost on the basics. bread and butter. looking out for people in trouble. hair the party you vote to when you're unemployed, when you need unemployment insurance, you're worried about retiring and needing every congressmen of that social security check you spent your life working for. democrats are the people you
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tend to trust when you see that the grand loudly promised benefits of globalism and greater productivity are going to the boys on wall street. when your factory is closing, you're being cut from a job you've spent decades doing your best at. this will be a tough year for the democrats but if they're smart, they'll start talking about real ways to create jobs, making steel to build rapid rail track and fast moving trains, bringing big, big heavy good paying industrial jobs back to put men and women to work here in our american neighborhoods because of real capital investments in rebuilding our subways and bridges and road systems. real jobs to replace the smell of decay with the healthy smell of construction, of dirt being moved and foundations being laid and real good almost forgotten factory noise. you'll be knocked for talking like this, mocked for the smoother better off critics out there. but the working people will hear you as real and mr. and mrs. democrat may end up with a good piece of the political action.

Hardball With Chris Matthews
MSNBC September 2, 2010 12:00am-1:00am EDT

News/Business. (2010) (CC)

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